Okay, Cupid? By Vanessa Peterson

Sorry but this isn’t a Hi, Hey, What’s up?
How are you? ‘Cause that’s wack just like crack.

It’s refreshing to see a Queen such as yourself,
a real woman who knows her worth. You have curls  

and curves for days, huh? Wanna grab a drink,
talk about random shit? You really think Rick’s  

swimmers were beating out weeks of Shane’s plowing?
I love reading philosophy, Eastern Philosophy

(but I’m partial to Sci-Fi as well). I still haven’t
done the Pottermore thing, always hoped I’d be  

a Ravenclaw. Soft-right-out-of-the-oven or
crunchy cookies? Is your last name Gillette?

Because you’re the best a man can get. I’m nothing
like a bad episode of Catfish, I swear.  

If you were a Skittle, you’d be a red one.
I’m going to bed. Text me tomorrow.  

 

Source: OkCupid Dating Site

Vanessa Peterson received her BA in English from Lock Haven University of Pennsylvania and is currently attending graduate school at Arcadia University. Vanessa is studying to receive her MFA in poetry and MA in English.  She enjoys visiting her parents’ house in Northeastern Pennsylvania to spend time with her family and two dogs, Mollie and Sasha.

better known as Miss Wilmott’s ghost By Sonya C. Brown

I spent mornings barrowing down manure;
        I was down on the plot late into the evening,
                    struggling to force sticks into sun-baked ground,                    

using aluminium foil to scare away birds,
        a cocktail of chemical traps and potions—
                    proof of vitriol for anything that disrupts lawns,                    

lining up plants like soldiers,
        daft horrors underplanted with ivy.
                    A buzzard dropped a dead rabbit nearby.                    

There was a sense of time unraveling,
        the scent of somnolent roses,
                    the potency of a bluebell wood in bloom,                    

yew hedges immaculately sculpted into scallops,
        drifts of Scabeous, a shimmering matrix of Deschampsia,
                    self-sown pepper trees marring the view.

You must be willing to be ruthless,
        cut back hard the gaudy displays.
                    Killing off a rose isn’t so easy.

Occasionally you wonder.
        Not to do so were unkind and immoral,
                    while the wood beneath you weakens                    

and the knot garden succumbs to blight.
        The edge of the map looms,
                    alive as the sun sets and moon rises:                    

glimpses of the Matilija canyon,
        the Queen’s racing colours,
                    purple, gold, black and scarlet.                    

With precious little help,
        with relentless tenacity
                    and occasional waves of vertigo,                    

I stretched a thin wire
        across the spot that rooted me,
                    across things that will outstay my abandonment.                    

Absurdities in the pursuit of paradise,
        I half-hacked them and laid them over,
                    cut the heart in two and dipped it in oil,

wiped the inking off the plate.                    

                                           

Source:  Gardens Illustrated, 2013-2016

Method: I once completed an exercise using several required words in a poem. For similarly inspiring words, I skimmed issues of Gardens Illustrated, copying words and phrases up to seven words in length. I found myself using these snippets differently than intended, arranging and rearranging them until in my mind they became a single voice. This character and I added punctuation, capital letters, and the occasional transition. I am profoundly grateful to the authors whose phrases were borrowed. “Miss Wilmott’s Ghost” is the cultivar name for an Eryngium that flowers white rather than the typical blue. I know nothing about the real, eponymous Miss Wilmott.

Sonya C. Brown, Assistant Editor of Glint online literary journal, lives in Maryland with her family, two elderly dogs, two middle-aged cats, four young chickens, and countless alter egos.

repurpose By Catherine Niu

I don’t know if you want

to be confronted with the
small black screws that fell

out of you in the library,

to bail out bliss and crunch it or

to tell the truth to soothe the throat, to hope—

who does?

Before enlightenment,

hope makes you feel
naked as a horse.

The pyramid crumbles in a sequined dusk.

How do you mend

a piece of crystal broken off
from the original idea of light,

a baby gorilla thumping his only friend,
an orange bucket,

a broken et cetera,

the wooden bird flutes in the brain?

We were all chasing nothing, poor pups,

no choice left but to intensify the chase.

To bite the repetition that could be an ending.

Glut the self on sorrow until it splits, like a pomegranate.

The idea was to live forever, to have a name.

There are many kingdoms left.

After enlightenment, belief in magic.

 

Source: Various poems from a poetry reading by Dean Young.

Catherine Niu is currently a senior at Princeton University. She loves the poignancy and play that language inspires and hopes to continue honing her craft. In her free time, she likes to search for beautiful things.